Thursday, April 17, 2014

My Shower!!!

I've said it before, and I'll say it again: I am blessed by the family and friends I have. When we were telling our closest friends that we were pregnant, we decided to invite them over for football. Brian made a toast at half time basically saying "Let's toast to a Packers comeback, and to all of you becoming aunts and uncles in June!" This revelation was followed by shrieks, shouts, hugs, and (male) tears from our amazing NYC family. Within ten minutes the conversation turned to "WE'RE THROWING YOUR SHOWER!" and Mrs. Anders, Mrs. Gilbert and Mrs. Gray began planning immediately. I can only imagine the reply to all emails that ensued! On April 5, I got to enjoy a beautiful party with my beautiful friends and family. I am so thankful for their encouragement, generosity, and support during this exciting time! Henry's impending arrival is made all the more special by their part in it. Here are a few photos of the day:

 The food and decor were ADORABLE!

 Cannolis, cupcakes, and minis cheesecakes!

 My family from L-R: Niece number 1, sister number 2, sister number 1, me, mom, niece number 2

 My hostesses with the mostestess!

 My two oldest friends in NYC: Myssi for seven years, Amanda from six years!

 Henry's name was a focal point for the decor!

 Packers inspired gifts! Baby cheesehead and baby overalls...Mr. Miller has the grown up sized of BOTH! (Much to my chagrin) 

 We played "Who knows Kristin Best" and used customized Baby Henry pencils! I used to get these as a kid, I love them!

All the ladies together! We had a great time!

Thank you especially to my hosts, it was a truly memorable day. 
I am still overwhelmed when I think of it!

How about you? What is your favorite shower game? Do you have a signature gift? What's your favorite party food? TELL ME ABOUT IT!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

What is your passion?

Have you heard the news!? Michael Phelps will be competing in his first event in two years. Two years ago he dominated the London Olympics, and I cheered him on just as I did in previous Olympics. He is an incredible athlete whose passion for the sport is clearly evident. When he said he was retired two years ago, I said to my husband "I hope he has another passion, because having nothing to drive toward is not going to sit well with him." Well, he's taking the first steps back, just like I thought! 

Good luck in Arizona, Phelps! Sorry Lochte. 

What do you do when you are unable to fill your passion? During this stage of pregnancy my runs have become less and less frequent. I get out about 2-3 times a week, but more often like 1-2 times a week these days. I LONG for long runs (Even five miles!), the return of runger, the feeling of wearing compression socks on a Saturday afternoon (Not because of pregnancy symptoms!). As I watched the 60 Minutes piece on Shalane Flanagan, I got teary eyed and started crying when they showed a video clip of a finish line filled with cowbells and well wishers. For the first time since before the Philly marathon, I actually missed 26.2. You KNOW I've got the running itch bad if I'm missing that beast!

I love you Shalane. That is all.

Today, our running community remembers the passion we all have with special significance. Today we remember the day when they tried to destroy a sacred place: the finish line. Today we continue to live "Boston Strong" as a community that won't back down, that will run united, that will wield their passion to inspire others. Today I am going to take time to reflect on what the run has given me. I won't remember the marathon of tears, the pain of tempo runs, or the chaffing of summer training. Today I will remember the finish line, what I've learned on my journeys to get there, and how I can't wait to get back there. Here's a beautiful collection of survivor's portraits reminding us that the passion to thrive lives on.

How about you? What is your passion? Will you be doing a special run today? Did you participate in any of the One Fund runs? TELL ME ABOUT IT!

Saturday, April 12, 2014


We all have them. This is a fact of life, right? Social media has changed how we reveal our problems to the world. In my attempts to be less stressed, I have found myself going on social media a little less and focusing on positives a little more. When you type in #pregnant on Twitter, the auto select's first choice is #pregnantproblems. Same thing with #runnerprobs. Shockingly, #teacherproblems doesn't come up....probably because we're scared of social media guidelines!

Stop complaining and enjoy life

I've been reflecting on what constitutes to a typed out complaint on social media. At almost 31 weeks pregnant, it would be SO easy for me to complain about things. I could go on and on about heartburn, being short of breath, my lack of endurance, or how I feel like I have NOTHING to wear. But do I really want to throw that thought in the world? No. I am thankful to be pregnant, thankful for my ability to still move, thankful that Henry is healthy and everything is measuring exactly where it should be. I have also been more conscious of this because I know many who struggle with actually getting and staying pregnant. I imagined one of those beautiful people reading a tweet of mine complaining about something they so desperately desire. So, I am anti #pregnancyproblems.

Amen! Biggest pet peeve ever!!!!!
I am also anti #runnerprobs. I think I've used that hash tag a time or two for an ironic purpose, but really, I can't. I have friends who are injured, on bed rest, who are dying to get some miles in. Really, the only runner problems a runner can have is not running. The rest of the stuff just comes with the territory! 

I know Iam NO Joni Mitchell with my singing voice...but it always sounds better than a complaining

Complaining about work can be a huge stress relief. I try not to post anything about work because we have really strict social media rules; basically anything you type can and will be used against you. Always. But in reality, what is that going to do for me? Telling someone my problem in person might help me actually solve the problem or issue. Getting annoyances off your chest can be cathartic, but does someone really want to read all about them constantly?  Probably not. I'm thankful to have a job despite the stresses of it, and I love my students despite their (sometimes CONSTANT!) frustrations. In the end, I would rather be cup half full about work than cup half empty.

Successful people build each other up. They motivate, inspire, and push each other. Unsuccessful people just hate, blame, and complain.

So, I'm choosing to complain less. I am going to try to relax and focus on the positives. There is nothing more refreshing than a person who is genuine about life, but doesn't look at it as "here's another bad thing" etc. I'm going to take a step back before complaining about something and reflect on how other's could think my bad moment is enviable. I'm going to embrace the hot weather, because darn it polar vortex, you almost took my soul.

The first person to complain that it's 'too hot' this Summer is getting thunder-punched in the throat!

How about you? Do you try to stay complaint free on social media? What are your tricks to staying positive? TELL ME ABOUT IT! 

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Week 30 Update - Name reveal!

Oh. My. Gosh. We are in the thirties! I can't believe this. We are entering the single digit countdown next week. Heart, stop beating so fast! This was an amazing couple of weeks, I'm so excited to recap them!

I had my shower this weekend! More details on that for another post. It was the most beautiful day, I felt BEYOND blessed by my lovely friends who generously gifted us with the most creative and amazing things. In case you haven't caught the comments from close friends, I figured it was time to reveal what this little boy's name is! (Also, I would not be able to post most of the pictures from the shower, since his name was a prominent decoration inspiration!) So, without further ado...

Introducing: Henry Joseph Miller

 Oh Henry! I LOVED this dress. I wish I could live in it. Target, make it in five colors please. Thank you.

Energy level: Going steady. I have definitely had a harder time falling back to sleep when I wake up in the  middle of the night. My mind is racing and it's hard for it to calm down! I did sleep for an eight hour stretch last Friday night and was SO confused when I woke up to use the bathroom and it was light out! I'd say going eight hours without peeing is going to be a fluke for the next ten weeks! I've also been noticing some nesting symptoms, which have spurred me on to tackling some things I would normally put off. I still couldn't stay up for the Uconn game (GO HUSKIES! NATIONAL CHAMPS!) because, my goodness, it was on LATE! I tapped out at 10:20pm.

Exercising: Staying consistent. With the nicer weather slowly becoming a normal occurrence, I have found it easier to lace up and get moving! I have also been keeping up with the Beautiful Belly yoga app, which I cannot say enough good things about! It helps me calm down when I'm stressed or find myself tired but with a million things on my mind. I even found the motivation to travel out to my coworker's apartment to do a group workout since NTC was canceled due to rain. This was a good two weeks of feeling healthy and active.

 Lambeau seriously loves yoga. I seriously don't love Lambeau's distractions during yoga.

Rain or shine we are NTC!

Cravings: still loving sweets with some grilling! We have been making some delicious meals, including BBQ chicken, veggie turkey burgers, and couscous salads to go with it all. Thankfully the ability to grill without fear of hypothermia has helped me "I don't know what I want to make for dinner" syndrome that I found myself with often.

This picture needed to make an appearance. A shower gift that helped us practice swaddling.

Weight gain: 21lbs. I haven't gained any weight in three weeks. This slightly concerned me, but all my mama friends have told me it happens, not to worry, there is still plenty of time to gain! JOY! I got nervous when I started to gain weight a little faster than "normal", now I'm nervous about not gaining weight! Ah, the side affects of pregnancy!

Mental status: I am feeling so much joy. Work has been stressful, and I have felt in limbo with getting things ready for Henry (Ah I can type his name now!). This week was filled with being with people I love, work pressures (slightly) calming, and receiving and organizing important things for this baby! We had family in town, got some painting/projects in the apartment done (Thanks Mr. Miller! You're a super star dad already!), and got to share the joy of expecting our son with those we love. I had been dealing with being VERY emotional for a few days, so this has been a welcomed change for sure!

Myssi (left) surprised me all the way from California!!! Amanda (Right) was the hostess  extraordinaire. 

Best advice: When you are stressed, repeat "I am healthy, my baby is healthy, it will all be okay." I can't remember who told me this, I think it was a coworker. I have been taking on a bit of stress lately, and this advice has done wonders for me. It's very simple, but repeating it to myself has helped me calm down over some silly things that sent me into a tizzy (Like breaking ANOTHER plate which held a perfectly dressed baked potato right before sitting down to dinner...).

How about you? Are you getting outdoors now that we are in a "thaw"? Did you do anything fun this weekend? What is your favorite thing to grill? TELL ME ABOUT IT!

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Big Announcement: New consulting job!

That's right! Remember when I said I had some big news I was keeping under wraps? Well, here it is! After a lot of deliberation and research, I have signed on to be a Rodan and Fields skin care consultant! 

Sorry, the internet is not ready to have my phone number!

I mentioned in my big news post that I would be staying at home during the next school year. My husband and I have thought long and hard about this, and have planned for it, but it will definitely be a financial sacrifice. I was looking for opportunities to earn an income to ease the burden of losing my salary, and this company seems like the perfect fit! Why? Here are a few reasons:

  • REPUTATION. These doctors are the very women who created Proactiv. Come on, we ALL used it! They are SMART business women. They decided to take their products from the shelves of stores such as Bloomingdales and Nordstroms and put them into the hands of direct sales consultants. Their company has grown exponentially and will soon be going global. 

  • RESULTS. Their products WORK. They have a 60 day (no strings attached) money back guarantee because they are so confident in their product. This company has endless support for its consultants and clients, providing a client satisfaction driven business. 

  • RECOGNITION. R&F Receives millions of free media impressions. Dr. Rodan and Dr. Fields are two of the most quoted skincare experts in the industry. Their products are often found in magazines and tv beauty segments, including their most recent Ellen spot! 

I am truly excited about this opportunity. Although you will be seeing a few posts here and there about some of the great products, I will mostly be sticking to running/health and wellness posts, don't you worry! However, skin care IS part of wellness, especially if you grew up like a sun baby like me (Sunblock? Was that around in the early 90's?).

How about you? Do you have a skin care regimen? Have you used the same thing for years? What's your favorite skin care product? TELL ME ABOUT IT!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Week 28 Update

Well, it's finally happening! I am finally being asked by students and parents if I'm pregnant! Although for students it has been pretty obvious for several weeks, they haven't openly asked me until this past week! Parents, on the other hand, usually see me in a jacket, so it's hard to tell! No hiding it now, baby and I are on our last leg in the toggle red Gap coat!

Classy bathroom selfie with my ever shrinking coat!

Energy level: I have risen from the land of the tired! I was feeling really run down weeks 25-26. I think it had something to do with the never ending winter (which reared its ugly head yet again this morning!). Last week I finally felt my energy coming back, and seeing 4- or 5- in the beginning of the temperature is definitely a fabulous thing!

I got out for a 3 mile run with minimal walking on Thursday! Winning!

Exercising: I ran my first (and last) race pregnant! I don't have any intention of running any more races (Let's be real, money doesn't grow on trees, and I'm not setting any PR's here!), but this was fun! I have run 13.1 NYC half marathon for the past four years, and was slightly sad that I wouldn't get my fifth year in a row medal. However, it turned out to be a wise decision with the polar vortex/weather we had, training was non existent! I also returned to NTC, which was awesome. A group workout is always good for the athletic soul!

 This cute guy ran with me the whole time!

We went to cheer for many friends who were running my beloved 13.1! It was so fun!

So much fun squatting it out with the NTC Crew!

Cravings: Girl Scout Cookies? Haha, I've certainly had my fair share since my order came in! I've been obsessed with my veggie burgers with avocado. Grilling season (40 degrees and above!) is upon us!

Veggie burger, provolone cheese, avocado, siracha an baked potatoes! 

Weight gain: I didn't weigh myself! I actually feel smaller this week than last week. Maybe baby boy changed position? I guess we'll know next update! Edited to add: I didn't gain any weight for the past two weeks. Still 21lbs going strong! I'm sure he'll have a growth spurt now ;-)

Mental status: ANXIOUS. My fabulous friend Ashley went and had a beautiful baby girl (Go congratulate her!). For some reason this made having a baby WAY more real to me! I guess it's because we have talked/tweeted/texted/emailed at length about all things baby that I figured we would have one at the same time! I need to calm myself and my ideas about the "what ifs" and my fears of blood/anything medical, AKA labor. I've been reassured by many moms that when the time comes I will be able to power through, but eek the build up is nerve wracking!!!

Best advice: I read an article called "7 Things I Wish Someone Told Me Before I Became a Parent". I knew 5 out of 7, I've been repeatedly told most of this advice by my four older siblings, all of whom have children (My child is the 14th grandchild!). However, "Enjoy sleep now" was the theme of the weekend! After running a 5k and full contact cheering for two hours, I was exhausted Saturday! Mr. Miller and I took a 2 1/2 hour nap, and it was pure bliss. I woke with the thought, "This won't be happening much longer." CRAZY to think about! I am also not the best with change, so "Be ready for the unexpected" is about to become a lifestyle for me! I tend to drag my heels and freeze when there is abrupt change...babies don't do well with that attitude! So, I will be sleeping when I feel like it and be more relaxed about changes for the next 12+/- weeks!

How about you? Are you one to drag your feet at change? Anyone race this weekend? Do you abhor bathroom selfies? TELL ME ABOUT IT!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Big things are coming!

Can you believe tomorrow is SPRING?! Let's count that as the FIRST big thing coming. Although it is just a day which doesn't force the weather to oblige, I've been secretly praying for optimal weather. Seems like tomorrow will begin an upswing into the 50's...but I will ignore the return to the 40's starting Sunday!

Dreaming of warm weather running...although there's no way I'll look like this!!! 7 months pregnant and growing....

This weekend I'll be doing a big thing: running a 5k 7 months pregnant! That's right! I'm running my 5th annual 13.1 NYC event; however, I will not be conquering 13.1 miles. I made the decision a while back that I didn't want to put that pressure on myself, and I am SO glad that I made that choice! This winter has been horrible for training, especially with ice. I will be running the 5k then cheering my little bump off for the fearless runners taking the course! I am partnering with Team World Vision again to raise money to provide clean drinking water for villages in Africa. Feel free to donate if you want

Successful PR/Failed Goal attempt last year. Don't think I'll need the fuel belt for the 5k...

Another big thing coming: the baby. Baby boy is due to arrive on or around June 16. School doesn't end until June 27 (Yes, NYC goes LATE), but I will obviously be making an early exit. In addition to this big arrival, a big decision has been made: I won't be going back to work for the 2014-2015 school year. I will be taking a full year off to be with my little gentleman. It won't be easy, but we have decided that this is the best decision for our family and are willing to make the financial sacrifice. 

Looking forward to summer with a bunch of cute little people. Crazy to think mine is joining the mix!

My last big thing: it's still under wraps. I will tell you that it is a new adventure that will be helping offset the financial sacrifice. It MAY also be something you are interested. Stay tuned for April where I will tell all!!!

How about you? What big things are happening in your life? Are you looking forward to spring? (Stupid question. EVERYONE is looking forward to spring!) Any races coming up? Tell me about it!